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The pros and cons of electric hot water tanks

Supported by Metropolitan Plumbing

Are you considering upgrading your home’s hot water system and weighing the options? Electric hot water tanks are a popular choice for many homeowners, offering a range of benefits and drawbacks. In this guide, we’ll cover the pros and cons of electric hot water tanks to help you make an informed decision for your household needs.

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Pros of electric hot water tanks

There are many advantages of electric hot water systems, making them a popular option in Australian homes. Let’s look at the 5 top reasons people select electric hot water tanks.

1. Ease of installation

Electric hot water tanks are renowned for their straightforward installation process. Unlike gas heating systems, they don’t require a gas connection, making them a convenient option for homes without existing gas infrastructure.

2. Energy efficiency

Modern electric hot water tanks have evolved to become more energy-efficient. Many models feature advanced technology like programmable timers and precise thermostats, allowing users to optimise energy consumption and reduce electricity bills.

3. Affordability

One of the primary advantages of electric hot water tanks is their affordability. They often come with a lower upfront cost compared to gas alternatives, making them an attractive option for budget-conscious homeowners.

4. Versatility

Electric hot water tanks are versatile in terms of installation. They can be easily placed in various locations within your home, whether indoors or outdoors, providing flexibility and convenience in terms of placement.

5. Low maintenance

Electric hot water tanks generally require less maintenance compared to gas models. With fewer components and no combustion process, the potential for issues is reduced, translating to lower maintenance costs over time.

The pros and cons of electric hot water tanks
Electric hot water tanks are large so if space is limited, you may need to consider more compact options

Cons of electric hot water tanks

Despite the benefits of electric hot water tanks, they also come with their drawbacks. Higher operational costs and space considerations are 2 of the main disadvantages of electric hot water systems. We’ll discuss the 5 main cons below.

1. Higher operational costs

While electric hot water tanks boast a lower upfront cost, they tend to have higher operational costs. Electricity rates can contribute to increased long-term expenses, making them less cost-effective over the life of the unit.

2. Slower recovery rate

Electric hot water tanks may have a slower recovery rate compared to their gas counterparts. This means it can take longer to heat a new batch of water after the hot water supply has been depleted. So if you have someone in your household who loves long hot showers, or you simply have a large family, this can cause inconvenience during periods of high demand… because you’ll have to wait until a new tank of water is heated!

3. Dependence on electricity

Electric hot water tanks require, well... electricity! So if you live in an area with frequent power outages, this will disrupt your hot water supply. You may want to consider an alternative energy source, like a gas hot water system, that can operate independently of the electricity grid.

4. Environmental impact

Electric hot water tanks are often critiqued for their environmental impact. The electricity used to heat water may come from non-renewable sources, contributing to a larger carbon footprint compared to some eco-friendly alternatives.

5. Space considerations

Let’s be honest, electric hot water tanks aren’t exactly stylish and these tanks often require more space for installation compared to compact gas models. This can be a significant consideration, particularly for homes with limited available space. An expert hot water plumber will be able to advise you on the best location to install your electric hot water tank and help with ongoing maintenance and repairs.

We hope this guide on the pros and cons of electric hot water tanks helps you make the right decision for your home. The key is to strike a balance between upfront costs and long-term operational efficiency for a hot water solution that meets your lifestyle. If you have any questions, pop them in the comments below. Or have you recently upgraded your hot water system? How did you decide?

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Gina Beschorner Style Curator

Welcome to Style Curator, your destination for daily interiors inspiration, styling tips, reno advice, home tours and DIY projects!

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